Parliament more about policy than politics: Modi

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday that Parliament is not only about politics but policy too and noted that content is about “connect” that is as much applicable to the parliamentary system as to the media.

Launching Sansad TV, which has been created by merging Lok Sabha TV and Rajya Sabha TV, jointly with Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, he said it is very important that the common man connects with Parliament and feels he is part of it.

Parliament is in fact more about policy that politics, Modi said.

The new channel adds another important chapter in the country’s parliamentary system, he said.

Noting that the launch coincides with International Day of Democracy, Modi reiterated that India is mother of democracy, saying democracy is not just a system but an idea and not merely a constitutional structure but spirit.

Democracy in India is not just a collection of the Articles of the Constitution but it is our life stream, the prime minister added.

On the occasion, he also stressed the need to focus on duties of the citizens, and said that the media can spread awareness about this.

In his speech, Naidu said there should be meaningful debates echoing people’s aspirations in Parliament and legislatures, and added that loud disruptive noise should not drown the voice of citizens.

Naidu said debates should amplify concerns, clarify doubts and deepen shared understanding.

Modi said in the form of Sansad TV, the country is getting a new voice of the nation’s democracy and people’s representative. He also greeted Doordarshan on completing 62 years of existence.

Highlighting the role of the media in the context of 75 years of India’s Independence, he said when it takes up issues like Swachh Bharat the message reaches people with great speed.

He suggested that the media can play a role during “Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav”, a campaign launched by the government in the run-up to the 75th anniversary of Independence, by planning 75 episodes on the freedom struggle or bringing out special supplements to mark the occasion.

Talking about the centrality of content, he noted that it is said ‘content is king’ but in his experience “content is connect”. When there is better content, people automatically engage with it.

As much as this applies to the media, it is equally applicable to our parliamentary system as there is not only politics in Parliament, there is also policy. He emphasized that common people should feel the connect with the proceedings of Parliament. He asked the new channel to work in that direction.

Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla said Sansad TV will play an important role in establishing a dialogue between Parliament and people and will create awareness about the working of our democratic institutions from panchayats to parliament.

Birla further said Sansad TV will disseminate information about Parliament, parliamentary Committees and other democratic institutions. It will also lead to optimum utilisation of resources.

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